As Republicans look back on the third defeat in a row for Donald Trump, they are still trying to figure out how to move forward while also confronting the obstacles that he has created.
This past weekend, conversations about the midterm election and the future of the Republican Party spilled out into the open as the Republican Jewish Coalition held its annual meeting. The group's annual meetings have been a friendly venue for Trump, as they were able to celebrate his achievements on foreign and domestic issues. But the appetite for change was also there.
Evy Stieglitz, a Republican activist from Miami, said that she was grateful for what Trump's administration had accomplished. She noted that she was also concerned about the possibility of him running for president in 2024. According to her, a real leader would know when it's time to step down.
According to her, many people in the Republican Party are already thinking about a new candidate for president in 2024. She said that she was leaning toward Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. DeSantis, she said, was the best choice for the country.
In his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition, DeSantis delivered a vigorous and energetic performance. He seemed to indicate that he might be eyeing a run for president in 2024. He noted that he had only started to fight.
The interest in a potential presidential candidate from the Republican Party was surprising, especially since the discussions about it had been happening in open public. Trump has dominated the party, and he is supported by the grassroots conservatives who make up the majority of the Republican base. The party is also not used to being transparent about its opposition to him.
Several prominent Republicans from the Trump administration urged the party to take a new course and replace the 45th president. Some of the individuals who spoke at the conference included Mike Pompeo, the former secretary of state, and Nikki Haley, the former US ambassador to the United Nations. Other prominent individuals such as Chris Christie, the former governor of New Jersey, and Larry Hogan, the governor of Maryland, also addressed the group.
For members of the coalition who are hoping to dump Trump, the focus was not on choosing a preferred candidate, but on figuring out a strategy to help influence the outcome of the primary. Trump made his bid for the presidency official on Tuesday, and he is expected to have a significant lead over the other candidates. In 2016, the crowded field helped boost his support among the Republican Party's base.
One of the members of the coalition who is hoping to dump Trump said that the party should only have a couple of candidates in the race. He noted that Trump had lost in both the 2020 and 2018 elections. He said that the party would be hard-pressed to absorb the losses that it would take in 2024.
Despite the various concerns that the coalition has about the presidential candidate, it is neutral in the primary. Trump still has the support of many of the organization's members and leaders.
During his first run for the presidency, Trump initially received a negative reaction from the coalition. However, after he became the president, he was able to win over the members of the group by implementing various policies. Some of these included the withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
During his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition, which was held from Mar-a-Lago, the president's private club in Florida, Trump received a standing ovation from the audience. He listed various achievements of his administration and criticized Joe Biden, the former vice president. However, the room remained silent when he started talking about the allegations that the 2020 election was stolen.
During his speech, Trump referred to the results of the elections as a "very disgraceful" and a "sham." He noted that there had been millions of more votes cast than in 2016. When asked about the US' foreign policy under a second Trump administration, Trump said that the future would be returning to the past.
The growing debate within the Republican Party about whether or not to remove Trump from the role of the party's titular leader is attributed to his inability to develop a comprehensive agenda and his constant complaining about his loss to Biden. The other reason is his cold-hearted pragmatism. Despite his various achievements, many Republicans believe that he is not a viable candidate in the next election.
After the 2018 elections, the Republicans lost the House and the Senate. In 2020, they were also severely defeated. Even though Biden's unpopularity and the concerns of voters about rising crime and high inflation were enough to keep independents with the Democrats, Trump was still regarded as unelectable. Many within the party believe that the same can happen to Republicans if the former president is still leading the party.
These concerns were aired during closed-door meetings and in the various speeches delivered by the president. The frustration with the president for endorsing candidates who failed in the House, Senate, and governor's races was also brought up.
In his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition, Pompeo asked the members of the organization to have a family discussion.
He also called on the members of the organization to be more focused on the principles of the party and not on their own egos. He said that the party should be led by leaders who will fight for its members.
The following day, Ambassador Nikki Haley called on the members of the organization to wake up and choose candidates who can win the general election. She said that Americans weren't happy with the way the party was run after Trump had endorsed certain candidates.
Several prominent Republican Party figures criticized Trump. Among them was former governor of New Jersey Chris Christie. He said that the Republican Party was going to lose because Trump had put himself above everyone else.
The Republican Party has lost the popular vote in every presidential election since the 2000 elections. It was unable to beat Joe Biden in the last election.
During his speech, Sununu called on the members of the organization to stop supporting unelectable candidates in the primaries. He said that the party should start getting behind the winners.
Due to the increasing number of speakers and the number of people who attend the Republican Jewish Coalition's events, the organization's CEO, Matt Brooks, has to allocate the necessary space for all of the politicians who are interested in appearing at the organization's conferences and events. The group's largest gathering was held at the Venetian resort in Las Vegas.
This year's event featured several prominent speakers. Some of them included House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, as well as Senators Ted Cruz of Texas, Tim Scott of South Carolina, and Rick Scott of Florida. The main attraction was the group of potential presidential candidates.
According to Ari Fleischer, a former press secretary for President George W. Bush, the invitation list for the event was intentionally designed to attract prominent Republicans. The Republican Jewish Coalition's conference was the first official candidate cattle call for the presidential primary in 2024. As the event concluded, Brooks said that he was sure that the attendees had spent the weekend with Biden's successor.
Following the event, Fleischer and Brooks held a news conference to confirm that the members of the organization were still interested in finding a different candidate to challenge Trump. They also noted that there would be a lot of people shopping for a new candidate in the next couple of years.
During the news conference, Brooks noted that the members of the organization were still interested in learning what lessons the Republicans learned from the midterm elections. They also wanted to see what the party could learn from the 2020 elections.
The preceding is a summary of an article that originally appeared on Washington Examiner.